University of Prince Edward Island vacation risk

The University of Prince Edward Island continues to grow, develop and attract more and more students. In 2012, 4555 students studied at the institution. Ten years later, this number has increased by more than 20% to 5,500.

A development not noted on the teachers’ side. In 2012, the University had 250 full professors. In 2021, it was 253.

Reaction figures from the University of Prince Edward Island Professors Association.

We are trying to maintain the number of teachers. What is happening now is not sustainable. More than half of our members work on precarious contracts with very low wages. »

quote from Margot Rejskind, Executive Director, Faculty Association, UPEI

Endless negotiations

The association’s demands include increasing salaries to keep pace with inflation, increasing the number of permanent teachers and improving working conditions for contract teachers.

étudiants qui sont très importants. Alors, le futur de l’établissement compte sur le nombre de professeurs. La question de la précarisation du corps professoral est importante. On veut préserver cette égalité scolaire”,”text”:”On veut protéger l’Université. On a 5500étudiants qui sont très importants. Alors, le futur de l’établissement compte sur le nombre de professeurs. La question de la précarisation du corps professoral est importante. On veut préserver cette égalité scolaire”}}”>The issue of teacher uncertainty is important. We want to protect this educational equalityMargot Rejskind, executive director of the UPEI Teachers Association, assures.

The University of Prince Edward Island has 5,500 students in 2022.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Julien Lecacheur

Things are not going well, not much progress. We started negotiations in April, then had four months of direct negotiations before filing for conciliation.Margot Rejskind explains.

Then, for the first time, the Ministry of Economic Development had to intervene to establish this consensus. The negotiations, which were supposed to last about ten days, ended up taking more than four months.

We have not seen any progress from the employer. They brought very few proposals to the table. Everything is fine for them. Rather, we want to talk about problems in general. »

quote from Margot Rejskind, Executive Director, Faculty Association, UPEI

2nd year government intervention

Faced with this impasse, Economic Development Minister Bloys Thompson decided to intervene a second time in early January. He asked to be appointed as a mediator.

He has 14 days from the moment of his appointment to submit a report to the minister on the state of negotiations. If the mediator can’t reach an agreement, both sides will enter a seven-day cooling-off period, after which they can request a strike vote.

jours. Mais après ce que l’on a vu avec la conciliation, nous ne croyons pas que cela va se résoudre à l’intérieur de cette période”,”text”:”Nous entrons dans un nouveau processus qui devrait supposément durer 14jours. Mais après ce que l’on a vu avec la conciliation, nous ne croyons pas que cela va se résoudre à l’intérieur de cette période”}}”>We are entering a new process that should last 14 days. But after what we have seen with reconciliation, we do not believe that it will be resolved within this period.says Dr. Michael Arfken, President of the Faculty Association of the University of Prince Edward Island.

Faculty of Engineering at the University of Prince Edward Island during the winter.

The Faculty of Engineering at the University of Prince Edward Island opened in 2016 in this new building.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Julien Lecacheur

Fear of vacation

Faced with this situation, the Association of University Professors believes that there is a possibility of a strike.

If things don’t work out, if the employer doesn’t come back to us with reasonable and fair offers, then yes, a campus labor strike is entirely possible. »

quote from Dr. Michael Arfken, UPEI Faculty Association President

Margot Rejskind adds that the courses may be suspended until progress is seen in the negotiations.

Anxiety is also growing on the side of university students. Student Association President Adam McKenzie assures that rumors of a possible strike are beginning to circulate on campus.

We want to sign a new collective agreement. We are against the strike because the biggest losers will be the studentshe assures.

Students are worried. Anxiety grows a little more every day. »

quote from Adam MacKenzie, UPEI Student Association President

On the part of the university, we assure in a press release that we want to sign a collective agreement that is fair to professors, teachers, librarians and clinical nursing instructors, thus helping the university continue its mission of offering exceptional learning opportunities for students. students and fulfill their commitment to the future.

The provincial government is hoping to avoid a strike. It will be UPEI’s first since 2006.

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